|Getting loads of proper smiles now :)|
So I haven't given up breastfeeding after all :) Was so close last week, but pushed on through and each day things seem to be getting a little better.
I've had great support from the local hospital's breastfeeding 'guru' - she's been very encouraging, checking I'm doing everything right and not having a go at me for introducing the bottle or the odd bit of formula. The suggestion from her is that James is simply a hungry baby that needs feeding a bit more than we were used to with Charlotte. So that means top ups, or more frequent feeds - the latter of which isn't conducive to also looking after a 20-month old toddler.
So at the moment - I'm feeding James myself when he's awake enough and we've got the time, otherwise it's a bottle of expressed milk (or formula if we've not got enough), with top-ups from the bottle if he doesn't seem satisfied despite coming off the breast.
So a mish-mash of everything, which is hard work, but should get easier the more he's simply taking from the breast. And if he's full and winded, we have one very chilled out boy. In fact that's how both the bf woman and the health visitor described him - "chilled". Rather different to the "strong personality" we often heard to describe his sister!
Talking of her - she's having horrendous nights because of her constant cough once again. She's on another course of antibiotics after the doctor said she's got a lingering chest infection. But she seems happy enough in between coughing fits.
Despite her rough nights, she's now sleeping in her 'big girl bed'. She kept ending up in it after cuddles to ease her cough anyway, so we thought we might as well try the full night. Unfortunately we've had one falling out incident, thanks to an ill-fitting bed guard (now rectified) - which ended up waking her up to the point of her thinking it was playtime, so ended up back in her cot.
And I can hardly believe her speech can have improved even more week by week - but the full sentences she now comes out with astounds me. "Look Mummy - it's a breadstick", "Look Grandad, my jeans fell down!". The talking of a 3-year old if the experts and books are to be believed.
Lastly, for this post, we're trying to establish a bit of routine with James already - otherwise we have no idea where we're at. So we've started with bedtime. Bath, massage, feed, story, bed, starting at 6pm - just as we did with Charlotte from a similar age - and so far it seems to be working.
He definitely gets his longest sleep when he's gone down (usually between 7.30-8pm), and up for feeds roughly every 3-4 hours after that (usually around 11-30pm, 2am, and then anything between 0430 and 6am). But it's proving trickier in the day as he doesn't follow very much of a pattern from which to take his lead - other than alternating one very awake day and one very sleepy day. So any kind of napping schedule will have to wait, and I'm just feeding him when he's hungry or every 3-4 hours if it's not so obvious.
Oh, go on then - another picture of my smiley 6-week old: